What can Easter sensory play do for your child? Well, plenty. There’s the whole holiday theme going on here. And then there are the science, fine motor and creative aspects. Your child is sure to enjoy this sensory play shaving cream paint activity.
Learning and Development
This specific activity puts your child in the center of the creative action, letting her mix up cool colors of bouncy, chunky and fluffy shaving cream paint. Yes, this sensory play idea is total messy fun. But, it’s so much more. During this activity your child will get the chance to:
- Explore through the senses of sight and touch – and possibly smell too.
- Recognize and identify colors.
- Take part in the scientific process – making predictions, making observations, drawing conclusions.
- Explore the artistic process.
- Build fine motor skills, such as eye-hand coordination and dexterity.
- Problem solve.
Materials for the Activity
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Shaving cream – to be honest, I chose a plain, unscented basic cream because it was on sale. It worked extremely well. I would advise against the gel kinds that foam up. They don’t get as fluffy as the plan creams.
- Food coloring
- Card stock paper, or another thick paper such as poster board or cardboard
- Squeeze out a few dollops of shaving cream, making separate piles. I like to use wax paper as an easy, inexpensive barrier. The shaving cream won’t soak through and you don’t have to spend a lot on a fancy artist’s palette. This is a fun way for your child to practice her fine motor skills and self-control. If she starts getting a little crazy with the cream, encourage her to take control of her own actions.
- Mix the paint. Drip a drop or two of food coloring into each pile. If you only have a few colors, blend a drop of each to make new ones. The primary colors (red, yellow and blue) combine to make purple, orange and green. Keep in mind, food coloring is extremely messy. It will stain clothes and may temporarily stain your child’s hands. The more it mixes in with the shaving cream, the lighter it will become. If you’re concerned about staining, using a plastic spoon or a craft stick to mix the food coloring until it lightens up enough for your child to touch it.
- Add some glitter. What child doesn’t love the sparkly stuff? Make this into a color matching game. Ask your child to pick the glitter that matches the shaving cream paint color.
- Decorate an Easter egg. If you’re wondering where the egg comes from, it comes from the paint and your child’s imagination. Your child can get messy and explore the shaving cream. Ask her to predict what will happen when she puts the cream on the paper. Will it stay fluffy? Will it get flat? Then have her tell you her observations as she finger paints an egg shape with it. She can add some of the other colors to decorate the egg.
Optional: Create other Easter themed shaving cream paintings. Your child can create a bunny, a chick or an entire Easter basket.
Sensory Play Extensions
Try adding a scent. Mix in a tablespoon of flavored, powdered drink mix. If your child is into eating things, skip this step. This is not a taste-safe activity, and you don’t want your child to confuse the paint with food.
You can also use this Easter sensory play activity at other times of the year. For that matter, you can use it at any time of the year. Instead of eggs and bunnies, your child can create her own designs. Or, she can get messy and just squish and push the paint around.
If your child enjoys sensory play, why not try a few more fun-filled activities? Check out these activities that are perfect for preschoolers and toddlers.
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Erica is a mom, educator and parenting writer, with an MS in child development. When she’s not teaching, she’s busy creating kids’ activities for her blog Mini Monets and Mommies.